The Romance of Ballyadams
“Herald! be a trumpet blown, I would speak with Sir John Bowen ! ” Thus cried Castlebaven’s lord, and the parley soon was heard.
Soon the answering trumpets sound; quick the drawbridge strikes the ground;
O’er it comes the Senesehal, and thus spakes before them all-
Castlehaven’s noble lord, Sir John Bowen sends thee word,
Dinner ‘s on the Castle board, feast thee first, then draw the sword.”
To Ballyadams, all alone, Castlehaven’s lord is gone;
High at board is placed his chair, ‘twixt Sir John’s two daughters fair.
Lovely as the budding rose, each young blushing maiden shows;
Sweeter than the song of bird are their gentle voices heard. -
When the feast had gaily sped, thus Lord Castlehaven said-
“Good Sir .John, thou hast not here culverin nor cannoneer;
Yield, then, Ballyadams’ tower to the high Confederates’ power; Yield, my friend,. and will take the terms that thou thyself shalt make,
Now, my Lord, to me attend; thou bast been my early friend; Didst thou ever know me break oath that ever I did, take?”
Stainless has thine honour been,” cried the Earl, “well I ween;
Whatsoe’ er thou say’st to me, with my life I’ll guarantee.”
“Then, my lord, on oath I make; if this tower you seek to take, If my walls by shot be riven, thus I’ll do, so help me Heaven- “I shall hang my daughters fair, fastened each upon a chair,
right in front of the wide breach, though their breasts thy shot must
Started Castlehaven’s lord, wondering at that desperate word; Then, to the pale maids he turned, deeply for their fate he mourned.
Took he then each maiden’s hand, as beside the board they stand; Kissed he then each maiden’s cheek, and thus gallantly he spake- ‘God be with thee, stout Sir John, I shall let thy fort alone; Though for this I lose my head. Harm I will not either maid
“Though my life the Council take, for that I their orders break
Death from them I’d rather dree than that these should die by me.”
Then ho marched his troops away, far they were ere close of day;
Thus was Ballyadams tower saved by beauty’s gentle power.